Accrington and Rossendale College is continuing to go from strength to strength – boosting its position in the newly published National Achievement Rate Tables following its successful merger with Nelson and Colne College.

Within 18 months of the merger, the shared benefits of joining forces with a leading College Group are coming to the fore, as Accrington and Rossendale College now sits with its partner as number one in Lancashire for 16-18 Advanced Apprenticeships.

For classroom achievement, at all ages and levels, Accrington and Rossendale College now places in the top five colleges nationally, building further on the dramatic improvements the college made in the 2019 tables.

The higher placings come soon after Accrington and Rossendale College achieved significant progress in the three main areas of inspection during a monitoring visit by Ofsted in October last year – a requirement of the merger – and at a time when a £4million transformation of the college campus enters its final phase.

Included within the redevelopment are brand new industry-standard Hair and Beauty salons, innovative study spaces, and a revamped specialist Learning Resource Centre. There are also dedicated Learner Services and Careers areas and a remodelled and modern student Refectory.

Coming soon is the redevelopment of the Construction and Automotive building and transformational green space creation to enhance the campus environment.

Principal of Nelson and Colne College Group Amanda Melton said: “This time last year, I said there was further ground that Accrington and Rossendale College could gain following the merger with Nelson and Colne College, and I think we have achieved that in a range of areas in the intervening 12 months.

“Whether it is in classroom learning, Apprenticeship achievement, significant progress with Ofsted or the complete modernisation of the Accrington and Rossendale College estate, the whole College Group has pulled together during a period of significant change to deliver the required positive improvements, and I’m very proud of this achievement.

“Our job now is to continue improving and to bring the extraordinary to Accrington, one of the many shared benefits of being in a leading College Group led by Nelson and Colne College.”

Kian Wilding, 18, has risen up through the levels in Carpentry and Joinery and is now a Level 3 Advanced Apprentice at Frank Anthony Kitchens in Blackburn. Kian, formerly of Hyndburn Academy, said: “I’ve always been hands on and Carpentry and Joinery is perfect for me – it’s a passion and I love it.

“I fit kitchens, work on bespoke jobs, and I enjoy developing my skills. There’s nothing better than completing a quality piece of work for a happy customer. I work with some amazing colleagues and a good employer and if there is anything I need at work then help is there.

“When I’m in College, I find the facilities are very good, my tutors are experienced and supportive, and they are also organised. I feel like I’m always on track and progressing in the right direction. I would definitely recommend Accrington and Rossendale College.”

Former St Augustine’s RC High School student Molly Simmonds, 18, who is studying Level 3 Health and Social Work Professions at Accrington and Rossendale College, said: “I really like the idea of working with elderly people as I think it is a very rewarding career.

“Accrington and Rossendale College has been great as the course content has been ideal, and I’ve had excellent careers advice. I’ve also had two work placements – one in a care home and one in an elderly ward at hospital – and these have really helped shape my career goal. My next step is to progress to the University of York to study Social Work.”

Applicants looking to apply to Accrington and Rossendale College still have the time. If you would like to apply to study at Accrington and Rossendale College, contact 01282 440272 or visit